a minute of your time
How has the Fringe been for you this year? I have to say I’ve enjoyed it immensely. It’s been great doing a late-night variety show and hobnobbing with a whole lot of different acts from across the Fringe. When I’ve been here before with the Black Sea Gentlemen we’ve just been pushing our own show and this year people are coming to us. What have been the highlights? Probably putting all these acts into the Supper Room, which is quite small – particularly some of the circus acts. There’s this Australian trio called Circus Trick Tease. They bounce off each other doing these acrobatic feats, and it’s so close to the ceiling! But that’s what’s exciting about the circus. When the danger’s not there it’s kind of a little bit boring, so it’s interesting when acts do something in a space that in some ways is not ideal but actually makes it more exciting. What’s it been like working with Paul Zenon? We’re different sides of a coin but we both like each other’s work for that reason. We’ve got very different styles of performance – he comes from a comedy background and I’m from the theatre and the concert hall, and we sort of gently undercut each other. In some ways our relationship working is central to the show being good – and more often than not it has been. But I don’t mind when things get a little bit oblique. A few awkward pauses can be quite entertaining. We’re a genuine odd couple and there’s a lot of love, but it’s led to some strange moments. How did the show come about? We’ve both done La Clique a fair bit over the years and sort of started conspiring about the idea of doing an act together. Assembly were interested in doing a late night show and we thought it’d be a nice opportunity to try some stuff out. It’s funny, people usually come to Edinburgh with some slick show they want to sell, but the joy of this show has been that the more comfortable we get the more creative it becomes. And audiences in that after-midnight time slot want something they’re not going to expect. It’s like the opposite of La Clique, which is the best variety performers with really honed acts. With us it’s an incredible ragbag of performers, who haven’t met each other before, and us trying to weave it into a coherent show. Any particular favourites? Lynn Ruth Miller, a comedian from San Francisco, did this fantastic burlesque piss-take where she comes out and sings a song and strips down to a fantastic old brassiere with little bike lights flashing on her breasts. In some ways it’s more childlike and more fun and sexy than any burlesque I’ve seen. She’s like a lovely rag doll.
The Late Late Show with Paul Zenon and Mikelangelo is at Assembly @ George Street, 12:15am, tonight and tomorrow. ANDREW EATON